Thursday, November 3, 2011


Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.--Albert Einstein

I love this quote and had to share it with you today. Our daughter, Alannah, shared the story of an incident which recently happened to one of her friends: one of her friend's teachers yelled at her and told her that she couldn't learn. Now, I ask you: if a child cannot learn is that her problem or the problem with the teacher? I believe it falls on the shoulders of the teacher. A teacher teaches. If they have a child who is having a problem catching on, perhaps they should try a different method of teaching.

I was privileged to have had the opportunity to teach at a private school for one semester a few years ago. When I was introduced to my class, the principal pointed out one young boy and told me that he had several learning disabilities and not to spend my time with him. I felt so bad that the school had given up on this boy and I was determined that I wouldn't. During the first few days, when I was grading his spelling tests, I noticed that while he would start the given word off right, he would leave off the end of the word. But when I looked further down the page, I would find the rest of the word. The same thing happened with math, health, language arts and in fact any other written subject.

I had a meeting with the boy's mother and grandfather and soon discovered that the boy had an eye problem. His eyes never rested. They constantly moved, and in so doing, moved everything on the page. I explained to his family that I wanted to teach him and was trying to find a way to do so. You can only imagine how happy they were to know that the boy wasn't stupid, and that I was willing to actually teach him, where others had given up.

So with the principal's permission, I did away with all written work for the boy. I explained to him that all his work would be given to him orally and that I knew he was smart and that he could do this work. We started that day and with the first test my theory was proven right. He made 100%! With each subsequent test he made between 95%-100%! After the first month the boy had moved from the lowest rung of the ladder in the classroom to now being on the principal's honour role every month. I was so proud of him! His family was overjoyed and the boy stood straighter and exuded self confidence.

What was the difference? A teacher took the time to find a way to teach. Anyone can learn, but we all learn in different ways. A good teacher finds a way to impart knowledge. Everyone is a genius, but not in the same field of expertise. Find what you are good at and do it. Don't put yourself down because you can excel in a certain thing as someone else does. God doesn't make junk. God gave us all the ability to learn and a good teacher can bring that out.

Hold on to instruction, do not let it go; 
   guard it well, for it is your life. Proverbs 4:13

 Apply your heart to instruction 
   and your ears to words of knowledge. Proverbs 23:12

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